Over Fifteen Institutions Benefit from Direct Engineering Support Services
In 2018, over 15 KENET-member Institutions have benefited from Direct Engineering Support (DES) initiatives. KENET DES’s are usually aimed at improving network performance and security, as well as enhance the institution’s staff implementation of transformational changes to ICT resources and Infrastructure. Some of the activities usually carried out during the DES include; backbone network infrastructure survey, Bandwidth Monitoring and Optimization, installation of Wi-Fi Access points to increase wireless coverage and offering recommendations on best practices regarding the network.
Kenya Wildlife Service Training Institute (KWSTI), Thika Technical Training Institute, University of Kabianga, Kagumo Technical College, Machakos University, Catholic University of East Africa (CUEA), National Commission for Science, Technology and Innovation (NACOSTI), Kisii University, Kisii National Polytechnic, Egerton University, Maseno University, University of Nairobi CAVS, Technical University of Kenya, Kenyatta University and Chuka University are the Institutions which received technical support from KENET engineers to enhance their network.
Thika Technical Training Institute - KENET conducted a DES at Thika TTI after connecting the institute to the KENET network. This was by redesigning the Local Area Network (LAN), segmenting the institute’s traffic and installing WiFi access points. After the DES, the Institution recorded an improvement in bandwidth consumption. The institution could now consume bandwidth speeds of over 100 Mbps during off peaks(6pm-6am), four times more than the capacity they were consuming prior to the DES.
The University of Nairobi and Kenyatta University – KENET has commenced to help Kenyatta University and the Nairobi university to upgrade their core network to 10G links. KENET also donated equipment. The University of Nairobi, College of Agriculture and Veterinary Science (CAVS) also benefited from the DES after a Wi-Fi expansion was done. The campus did not have sufficient WiFi access points to provide wireless access to both the students and university staff. KENET donated 20 Access points to UoN CAVS to increase the WiFi coverage at the campus. The installation of the access points resulted in increased traffic consumption from 100Mb/s to over 300Mb/s.
KMTC Nyamache – In July 2018, KMTC Nyamache was connected to the KENET network. It was noted that the Institution did not have a campus network infrastructure which meant that the users could not consume the bandwidth provided. KENET therefore offered to develop campus infrastructure to KMTC Nyamache. This involved installation of structured cabling and access points in the Lab and the Administration offices. This ensured that the users were finally able to enjoy the KENET services.
Egerton University – The DES involved Wi-Fi expansion at the Institution. Wi-Fi coverage at the University was targeted at mostly the students hence the access points were installed in student areas. During the DES, KENET donated 16 WiFi access points to the installed majorly in these staff locations. The University can now roam within the university without losing connectivity as KENET assisted the Egerton University team in installation and configuration of the access points and enabling of roaming services.
Regional Centre for Mapping Resource for Development (RCMRD)- RCMRD recently joined the KENET community and is connected via a 1Gb/s last mile fiber to the KENET data center. RCMRD subscribes to the EUMETSAT services which require a low latency and reliable connection during data transfer. Currently, RCMRD receives a subset of the EUMETSAT data through the EUMETCast satellite service. However, EUMETSAT connects to the GEANT network in Europe which is a regional Research & education Network. GEANT is a KENET partner and this partnership enables for low-latency and reliable interconnections between NREN member clients. As such, through the KENET network, RCMRD will be able to subscribe to EUMETCast Terrestrial service which is only offered through Research & Education Networks such as KENET. This additional service will allow RCMRD to access a wider data set from EUMETCast and have better simulation and predication scenarios from the larger data sets for their research. KENET also assisted the RCMRD ICT team in optimizing their LAN to ensure seamless connectivity to the resources required.
Feedback from the Field
“The DES has made it easier for students and staff to access Internet across the Campus due to the various access points put in place. We have many ongoing projects across our Campus, and this project will hasten the ongoing projects since the measures are already in place”- Mr. Patrick Chirchir, University of Kabianga
“The training and DES were quite an eye-opener for KWS Training institute in many aspects, but what primarily resonated with us was the Network Optimization which helped identify bottlenecks, obsolete devices and even to some extent network loops within the network. The KWS ICT team is grateful for the help accorded via the DES, collaboration and knowledge shared throughout the week by the KENET engineers.”- Mr. Anthony Kaloosya, Kenya Wildlife Service Training Institute
“The network has been working very well and we are quite happy. We always integrate ICT in our learning and host ICT workshops and outreach programs, and good connectivity from KENET has enabled us to achieve this.” -Mr. Kiboi Mwatha, Kagumo Teachers Training College